Day 9

Title: Day 9
Author: tarotgal
Fandom: Buffy the Vampire Slayer (sort of Season 8)
Rating: PG
Pairing: Spike/Xander
Disclaimer: Not my characters, not my 'verse. I don't get paid a cent to play. Please don't sue and make things worse.
Summary: Xander and Spike are scheduled to take a vacation; will a cold ruin their plans?
Note: Part of the 12 Ficlets in 12 Days project 2009-2010. Requested by silverelf


Spike returned from the bathroom wearing only a towel and droplets of water. Xander rolled over in their bed. “You know I hate when you walk around the halls of this place practically naked.”

Spike shit the door behind him. “They can look all they want. You're the only one who gets to touch. Besides, it's early. No one's around to see.”

“Someone's always awake here. I miss being completely alone with you.”

Smiling, Spike dropped the towel. “That's the point of today, isn't it?”

Xander patted his chest and Spike hastened over to the bed. He lay crossways on the bed, his head on Xander's chest, a hairy, slowly rising and falling pillow. Xander ran his hand through Spike's short hair. The quasi-vampire had recently re-dyed it, and Xander was still getting used to it looking like used to look. Much like Spike was still getting used to Xander's new fake eyeball. On more than one occasion, Spike had been caught just staring at it, trying to make sense of the way it worked with Xander's face. Xander hadn't even bothered with the eye today… and he wasn't sure he wanted to bother with anything, actually. “What do you say we just stay here today, huh? We can go grab some food from downstairs before Team A of the slayers get up, and we can hide out here in our room making love.”

Spike turned his head slightly, eyeing Xander out of the corner of his eye before closing his eyes completely. “You heard me sneezing, didn't you?” It wasn't a question. Spike knew he had, and he knew from the way Xander was stroking his head that the man was worried. “It's just a little cold,” Spike said. He sniffled lightly, then he pressed the side of his hand to his nose. “ihKShoooo! Snrff, snrff! Really, Pet. Just a cold.”

“That's what you said last time, remember? And you ended up with pneumonia. And the time before that—bronchitis and a high fever.”

“You'd think a bloke like you would get off on giving sponge baths.”

Xander pressed his hand to Spike's warm forehead. “This bloke gets off on you, sick or well, but I prefer when I don't have to worry. So… staying in, then?”

“No way,” Spike decided for them. “We have been planning this trip for months. We've been in Scotland for ages and you haven't been able to see the good parts of it. Just because I caught a little sniffle shouldn't ruin our fun.” He rubbed at his nose repeatedly, then rolled onto his side, looking up at Xander who, somehow, already had a handkerchief out and ready for him “Th-thanks.” Spike spoke softly, unable to control his hitching breath. He took the handkerchief and covered his nose. “ihhh-Ketchoo! ihTChoo! Snrfffff!” When he shook his head, trying to free it of the cold, he caught Xander's eye again. “I'll be fine. We're going to have fun.”

Xander took another minute, then finally sighed deeply, giving up. “Okay, but before we go, you're going to drink a whole cup of blood.”

Spike grimaced. “Half.”

“You haven't had any blood in nine and a half days. It's no wonder you got sick again. A full cup.”

Spike got up and went to their wardrobe. It was spring, but he made sure to choose layers so he would have some warm clothes. “If we were still in LA, I can bet you wouldn't be keeping track of how much blood Angel drinks.”

“I would keep track of how much he drank if he and I were fucking five times a week. But you can bet your sexy ass that pigs would fly through a freezing cold Hell before I let him anywhere near little Xander.”

His head still in the wardrobe, Spike laughed hysterically.


“Ah,” Spike sighed, sliding into the passenger seat of the car that meant freedom and, for once, a deamon-free vacation weekend. “Fresh air and getting out of that damp, drafty castle is just what I needed.” He coughed a few times, lightly.

Xander eyed him, but said nothing about the coughs. “So what's on the agenda for today?”

“First, we have a damp, drafty castle. Followed by some gorgeous, dreary moors and another damp, drafty castle. Then lunch wherever we like and…”

“Another damp, drafty castle?” Xander guessed.

“Very good. Ihhh… Ihtchoo! Ehtchooo! Snerffff!


Spike quickly continued, “And some mountains and villages and all sorts of interesting things along the way. We can spend the day in the highlands and then drive to Edinburgh tonight to spend the day there tomorrow.”

“What do they have there?” Xander asked. “Or, wait, let me guess. Another damp, drafty castle?”

Spike laughed. “See, that's what I like about you, Pet. You catch on fast. I want you to see everything out there… and I want to share it with you.”

He leaned over and kissed Xander, who felt wonderfully reassured. Spike's soft lips against his easily convinced him that the fight against evil could go on without them for a few days. Even Spike's cold didn't even seem important. All Xander cared about today was being with Spike and seeing him happy. And that laugh was a damn good start. Happily, Xander kissed back, and then they hit the narrow, windy road.


As soon as Spike got out of the car, he shivered. “The blanket should still be in the back,” Xander said. They had bought a rather expensive wool blanket with a gorgeous plaid pattern at a small shop outside Glencoe. Spike had thought a picnic lunch would cheer Xander up after Spike had regaled him with the tragic tale of the MacDonalds of Glencoe, slaughtered in their beds because of the Campbells. The lunch had, in fact, helped. And it had been delicious.

They had found the shadiest spot outside to set up, and Spike had stayed under the tree cover as much as possible. As a half-human, he no longer burst into flames in the sunlight. But he did have his limits. Too much sun during the day, however, caused a sunburn the likes of which Xander had never even heard of before.

It wasn't until the end of the day that Xander understood why Spike wanted to stay out of the sun; he had been saving himself for later. Almost as if he had arranged it with the witches, the sunset was spectacular, and Spike had planned out a wonderful spot in which to watch it.

Spike retrieved the blanket and wrapped it around his shoulders. Xander rubbed his lover's upper arms through the blanket. “Warmer?” Xander asked. Spike nodded. “Then let's get going before the sun sets completely.”

They hiked a short way up one of the foothills in Glenfinnan, within sight of both Loch Shiel and the viaduct. They sat together on the side of the hill, watching the sun set between the two immense mountains, reflecting off the water, and around the tall Memorial to the Jacobites. The strong oranges and reds filled the sky in a gorgeous gradient.

They watched in silence, sitting side-by-side, until Spike had to sneeze again. “ehhh.. ihhhShooo!” He scrambled for his handkerchief, only to find Xander had one ready for him. He took it with a smile. “ihhChshhhh! hihShuhfffff!” Spike blew his nose and shivered again. When he opened his eyes, he saw Xander frowning at him.

“That's it,” Xander said, shaking his head. “Come here.” He pulled at a side of the blanket and burrowed beneath, right up against Spike. Spike snuggled close to him and they pulled the blanket all the way around them. Xander could feel Spike's soft heartbeat race and the soft breath touched his skin. 

“I'b sorry I caught a cold. I wadted this weeked to be berfect add relaxing.”

Xander smiled. Sure, he didn't want Spike to feel sick. But the cold was a nice reminder that he was half-human now. And the snuggling… Spike the vampire wouldn't have snuggled with Xander in a million years. But this Spike was his in every sense. His to hold, to love, to worry about. And Xander wouldn't want it any other way. “Best vacation I've ever had,” Xander whispered. “So don't you apologize.”

“You're easily pleased, Pet.”

Xander found Spike's hand beneath the blanket and squeezed it. Maybe that was true. Maybe he was. But he never used to be.